Ranking of Kings Review – Small But Not Weak

Image Credit HITC

Life isn’t always fair, and not everyone is dealt the same hand. However, regardless of your lot in life, it’s essential to persevere and grow into the person you were always meant to be. 

“Ranking of Kings” is an anime that embodies this idea in extraordinary fashion through its main protagonist Bojji. Bojji has the stature of a small child and is both deaf and mute: all unlikely characteristics for the warrior society he finds himself living in. Yet, despite Bojji’s disabilities, as the heir of a throne, he perseveres to become the greatest version of himself. That journey of self-improvement is the height of the hero’s journey, and Bojji’s limitations only become a path to his improvement, as it allows him to frame the world in a way that no one around him can see.  Not many anime tackle topics like this, so it’s exciting to see. For any who faces limitations in life, you’ll find Bojji to be a relatable protagonist.

While Bojji is the show’s star, the characters accompanying him on his journey are part of what give the world within Ranking of Kings a remarkable life. While the elements of the world are genuinely fantastical, involving strange powers and battles between godlike power, the characters have a unique duality, something that many fantasy stories lack. Many of the characters are capable of both good and evil; none are inherently one or the other. Just because one character behaved in a way that might be construed as evil in the eyes of one character, it doesn’t mean each member of the cast is going to feel that way. That lack of binary good or evil means that “Ranking of Kings” breaks away from traditional fantastical character tropes and in moving ways. This allows the viewer to become truly immersed, as the more complex an action or emotion, the more the curiosity within the viewer grows.

Wit Studio animates “Ranking of Kings”; the studio is best known for famous animations like Attack on Titan or Vinland Saga, both extremely popular anime for their story and high-quality animation style. Both the story and art are sourced from the original manga by Sōsuke Tōka. While manga is usually a simplistic style, Toka’s art has a childlike feel, almost Disney-like. Such artistic style is often in countenance to the themes addressed within the animation. One of King’s Ranking’s greatest strengths is how refined the animation is. While it’s not the greatest you’ll ever see, it’s pretty close; it’s clean, with minimal dragged-out scenes and short moments of action to complement it. The characters are expressive, and the backgrounds are exceptionally artistic.

“Ranking of Kings” provides an excellent introduction to anime. If you’re interesting in starting, this the place. Heartwarming, adventurous, and political, anyone is sure to find an aspect of the show they can enjoy. It looks like the show will continue for another season or two, so if you find yourself enjoying it, there’s likely to be more. 

For anime fans that have been holding back or haven’t heard of it: what are you waiting for?! Watch it! 

Rating: 5 out of 5.

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